Facebook Launches New Preferred Marketing Developer Program, Big Implications for Facebook Ecosystem

The past 24 hours have been an exciting time for us here at Spredfast as Facebook unveiled to the world its revamped program for Developers and Marketing companies. What was previously known as the Facebook Preferred Developer Program and Marketing API program have now been rolled into one: the Preferred Marketing Developer Program. And we are proud to officially announce that Spredfast is a member of the new preferred program.

I spent the day yesterday at Facebook's Menlo Park event with our CTO Keith Zoellner getting the inside scoop from the Facebook team on the new program, how it will affect the brands we work with and what it means to members of the Marketing and Development community like Spredfast.

The scale of the event spoke volumes about the importance of the new program to Facebook. They are taking the new program very seriously. The invite-only event was attended by tons of developers representing several product groups. Not only was it well planned with a great speaker line-up and behind the scenes insights, but it also provided good exposure to the broader vision and a few interesting product details about how they plan to get there.

The new Facebook Preferred Marketing Developer Program will carry many implications for the enterprise companies and brands we work with, and it also sheds light on Facebook's increased investment and need for this community.

- Facebook is taking preferred status seriously. While there are four different preferred statuses available "Pages, Apps, Insights and Ads" more than ¾, or roughly 175, of the 232 members only have one of the four preferred statuses. The application process was stringent and Facebook is ensuring the members are representative of the status.

- Present were a few hundred colleagues working on some of the most intriguing social marketing campaigns and programs.  It was a great opportunity to network amongst the developer community.

- The access to internal Facebook experts was unprecedented. The sheer access the Facebook team provided was a resounding nod to the investment they are making with companies leading innovative development something we strive to do daily at Spredfast. 

- The event gave an opportunity to ask difficult/challenging questions that developers traditionally shy away from asking in public forums.  All questions (even the challenging ones) received honest, direct answers. Facebook is offering this preferred group of developers unprecedented transparency and openness to fuel the success of the program.

- One great takeaway from the event was "alignment." Facebook made it clear the gaps that they expected/encouraged developers to step in and fill.  They challenged them to keep up with product releases and build solutions that helped build bridges to specific verticals, use-cases and company sizes. As more brands place more importance in social business, this will be a key factor to their success. And Facebook is supporting and encouraging this small group to help lead the next round of opportunities here.

Beyond the "inside" access to the Facebook team and being taken on tours of the new, creatively laid out Facebook campus, one of the coolest and most humbling aspects of the event was that every Facebook speaker started by thanking the audience for their work.

We are thankful in return and are definitely feeling the love from Facebook as we enter into this exciting new program as a Preferred Marketing Developer for Pages and Apps. We heard the challenges, have talked about the opportunities firsthand with the social network leading the path for innovation and up for playing a big role to help the social media management space to the next level with Facebook.

Having a direct line into Facebook will help our customer succeed as we continue to focus on providing the most robust, innovative features to position the enterprise for success across not just Facebook, but the social media landscape as a whole.

*If you're a fan of press releases, you can read our official announcement here: Spredfast Accepted into Facebook's Preferred Marketing Developer Program.

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Dan is responsible for managing Spredfast's partner relationships and corporate business development efforts. Prior to joining Spredfast, Dan most recently served as Director of Business Development at venture capital firm, Austin Ventures. In this capacity, he focused on early-stage investments in the new media, Internet and social software industries. He has previous experience in the early-stage venture capital business, as well as investment banking. Dan received a B.A. in Economics from Northwestern University and an MBA from Boston College.